12 Storage Container Houses – Know the Pros, Cons, and Cost Before You Invest
Interested in a container home? Today, shipping container homes are gaining immense popularity and construction companies are turning them into something fully functional. You must be wondering why shipping containers are gaining such an outstanding acknowledgment. Well! Steel shipping containers are an affordable and eco-friendly alternative to brick-and-mortar buildings. Also, you can have them delivered to your site and opt for any design of your choice. These storage buildings or container homes are built in a factory-controlled setting and can be pre-fitted for installation.
Let’s dive deep and understand more about shipping container home plans…
12 Popular Storage Container Houses
A trend that’s growing in popularity in recent years, shipping container homes are offering numerous advantages to the homeowners. If you are looking for some popular storage container houses and want to know about their pros and cons as well as price, the following list might help:
1. Riverfront Container House – This beautiful container home belongs to Rick who has a background in real estate and built a two-story shipping container home. This was a result of a short term rental on his riverfront property in Jupiter, Florida. Just a few steps from Kayaking on the Loxahatchee River, this house features three containers and an appealing design. As far as the design is concerned, he used spray foam insulation in the walls and ceiling.
He has to work hard to get building code approvals and finally proposed the idea of building the house with traditional construction. Also, he had to compromise on several design aspects to get the approval but the result was worth waiting.
2. PV14 House – A principal at Corgan, Texas, owns this huge 3,700 square foot shipping container home. The house is approximately 100’ above the surface of white Rock Lake and located directly across the street from White Rock Park. It was designed with an idea to build a modern residence equipped with all amenities. As far as the design is concerned, it has three bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, and an outdoor swimming pool. The extensive use of overhangs and porches help capture natural light while protects the windows from direct sunlight. Other features include exposed steel structure, concrete floors, prefab steel modules, and glass.
The team had to research a lot to navigating the used container to the site.
3. Tiny 20-Foot Off Grid Shipping Container Home – This beautiful and tiny container home belongs to Brenda Kelly who managed to build an incredible off-grid house using a single 20ft shipping container. The solar-powered shipping container cabin offers all of the comforts of a luxury cabin and packed with functional, space-saving ideas. As this is a 107 square feet house, it didn’t require building permits or council consent. It is the structural integrity of shipping containers that fascinates her and motivated build a home out of these large boxes.
As this is a tiny container home as required no building permits, Brenda would wish to have researched more about the building permit of a large container house.
4. Nomad Living Guest House – Designed and built by Arnold Aarssen from Studio ArTe, this 40-foot shipping container house sits under a tree and offers over 300 square feet of living space. This shipping container retreat includes a shed for guests, a home studio, a home office, a pop-up, and a lot of other features such as huge windows and sliding glass doors. The room expands out to a sailcloth-covered terrace that has well-defined boundaries. This brightly-colored guesthouse is located in the backyard of residential property in the Algarve region of Southern Portugal.
Though the container came out to be an excellent piece of work, the team still thinks that they would have insulated the shipping container better. They ended up soldering elements on the walls followed by a foam anti-fire insulation spray.
5. Modern Container Home – Saffy and her husband Dom’s stunning modern container home is a perfect example of innovative use of plywood sheathing. Located near Adelaide, Australia this container home is a 40-foot high cube with fiberglass batt insulation between the studs and plywood lining on the walls, floor, and ceiling. Coming to the design, the container has four rooms, a bathroom, and a living area. They have also installed an eco toiler and a large rain shower. It does not have a full-fledged kitchen but equipped with portable induction cooktops and a BBQ outside.
They have a building designer draw up the shipping container floor plans for council approval. As the Australian climate gets warmer, they suggest thinking carefully about the heating/cooling/insulation.
6. Atlanta Backyard Container Homes – The two small container homes in the middle of Atlanta is the result of hard work done by Adele and her partner. They bought the roughed-in containers to the site using the crane and completed the finished work on-site. They used two 20-foot cargo containers with floor areas of 144 square feet each and converted them into an actual living space. They opt not to paint the exterior and insulated the cabin with closed-cell foam.
It wasn’t a cakewalk for them to build a fully-functional container home. They also struggled with issues like water leakage above the windows and doors and finding the units too airtight. The container homes cost approx $30k each, excluding the interior furnishings or patio area.
7. Riverside Hideout Container House – Tucked into the woods and hills of Dover, Ohio, this beautiful riverside hideout container home. It has everything that one needs for spending quality time such as a bedroom, a mini kitchen, bath & living room for lounging. It is located near Ohio/Erie Canal tow oath trails, Atwood Lake, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Historic Zoar, and other popular spots.
Though the current container house is an epitome of perfection, Ryann had to face a lot of problems during the initial phase. He originally used fiberglass batt insulation which resulted in condensation problems like water damage in the bathroom and kitchen. Therefore, he took it down and replaced it with closed-cell spray polyurethane foam. Also, he installed a high-powered exhaust fan to keep it dry in cold environments.
8. North Branch Container House – Designed by Tim Steele from New York, this shipping container house is a beautiful building built into the hillside. The house belongs to Robyn Volker and made using three converted containers. This 120- square foot container house has two bedrooms and two bathrooms. The upper floor is organized around an open kitchen while the lower floor is the master suite with a spiral stair connecting the two floors.
As this shipping container home was constructed years back, there was a lot that was unknown. However, the house could be just one level or double-storey as a gap was created between the containers to create a passageway and easy access to the containers.
9. Manifesto Shipping Container House – Designed by James & Mau and built by Infiniski, this is one of the most popular shipping container homes as it was built using 85% recycled and eco-friendly materials. This house is a perfect example of the potential of bioclimatic integration, recycled & reused materials, and non-polluting fabrication techniques. Holding to an innovative design, the structure has a system of palette shutters that open and close to expose the metal volumes. It utilizes prefabricated and modular components to suit the evolving needs of the client.
The design of the container house is quite impressive but just like other houses, it has also undergone some issues. According to James & Mau, they need to put some pallets on the external walls to control the sun and protect against condensation.
10. Containers of hope – An experiment for the client and architect, the containers of hope have become highly popular across the world. Designed by Benjamin Garcia Saxe for the Peralta family, these house containers provide over 600 square feet of living space. They boast a bold design with huge windows and raised midsection. The containers are arranged in a way that allows a view of the rising as well as setting sun. Also, they are designed for natural ventilation and offer a feeling of home. Talking about the building cost, the shipping container house costs a very reasonable $40,000.
The only issue faced by the Peralta family is related to the noise made by the containers in extreme wind.
11. California Canyon Container Casa – A modern container house on the edge of a mountain canyon that belongs to Mike and his wife offers amazing views from inside and outside. The beautiful southern California 20-foot container home is constructed using traditional framing techniques. As far as the design is concerned, it covers a total floor area of around 800 square feet and built with wood framing above the containers. Other features include concrete floors, exposed utilities, glass roll-up garage doors, and raw exterior. The exterior structural framing is made out of wood while metal studs are used for the non-structural interior framing. Coming to the insulation part, it is done with closed-cell spray polyurethane foam (ccSPF) in the walls and the floors.
It cost around $160,000 for design, permitting, and construction of this container house. As far as the challenges are concerned, Mike and his wife ended up using their savings and credit cards to finish the work. They wish to have discovered the financing woes during the initial construction phase.
12. Refrigerated Container Homes – Built with pre-insulated refrigerated containers, the two container homes are a perfect example of natural beauty. These bamboo farm container homes owned by Shanti are located on her property in Florida. Each house is made from a 40-foot container and has insulated stainless steel walls and an aluminum ceiling. The dents are left exposed to keep the natural look of the containers and each unit has a queen-size bed, a TV, a sofa area, and a kitchen. Also, both the units have a bathroom with a full-size shower and a washer/dryer/.
Coming to the challenges faced by Shanti, she has to make some arrangements to handle the extreme weather.
Shipping Container Storage
Apart from being a highly popular means of transporting goods, shipping containers can be an excellent solution for storage. Shipping container storage can be used to store a variety of items right from the machinery to vehicles. These cost-effective and easy to install containers are also ideal for storing fresh produce like dairy, seafood, vegetables, etc. All they need is a connection to a power supply to maintain the required temperature and they are good to go. Though they are ideal for storing a variety of products, only items requiring the same conditions should be kept inside the containers.
From an investor’s point of view, a shipping storage facility can be a great investment as it allows storing an array of products such as fresh produce, vegetables, vehicles, furniture, chemicals & pressurized gases, power tools, and more.
Steel Storage Sheds
There are numerous benefits of having steel storage sheds, especially when you are looking for good quality without spending a fortune. Metals sheds are affordable and will be virtually impervious to moisture, rot, mold, fire, and other damage. Also, they are extremely easy to maintain as most metal parts are available easily and roofing warranties can be extended beyond the norm. It means they provide exceptional resistance from damage by such things and keep your things safe from fire.
Though metal sheds offer a faster setup solution, there are fewer options available for shapes and sizes. Also, you need to repaint them regularly to keep a fresh appearance.
Wooden Garden Storage
Wood is the traditional and most popular material for building a shed and also boosts the aesthetic appeal. Wooden garden storage sheds enhance your backyard and adds value to your home. Wood is a great insulator and a highly durable material to construct sheds. Also, it can be customized to create a huge variety of shapes to suit your requirements. Being a renewable source, wood is an environment-friendly option available to create sheds in your garden. However, wooden garden storage requires more maintenance as compared to other materials as wood is prone to pests.
If you are considering a DIY project, you may need to hire a specialist as building storage shed out of wood may take long assembly time and some professional know-how.
Carport with Storage Shed
A metal utility storage shed can be an excellent carport as it helps to make the most out of your space without spending too much. A carport is a cost-effective way to ensure your valuable vehicles are safe from elements like rain, strong winds, etc. Carport designs are flexible as they can be installed about anywhere on your property. Also, the council guidelines for building these structures are not that strict as they are not considered livable space. A carport not only acts as a place to keep your vehicles but also store the essentials like garden tools and equipment.
Though a carport shed is quick to erect but provides less protection from the elements and less versatile. However, with so many design options available, you can customize the shed as per your outdoor storage needs.
Prefab Storage Sheds
For both large and small establishments, they must have proper storage. If you are looking for a simple and quick solution, prefab storage sheds can be an excellent choice. These portable and customizable sheds are manufactory in a factory and then transported to the site for further assembly. Also, prefab buildings are eco-savvy structure allowing you to save big on energy and insurance. It is extremely easy to attach a more prefab structure to the existing one to expand the storage space. Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about the maintenance as prefab storage buildings are highly durable.
Although prefab storage sheds are manufactured in a factory in a controlled environment, sometimes you are not aware of the material they are made from.
Shipping Container Sizes and prices
Storage container homes have become the talk of the town as they offer a fast and green approach to a conventional building. Also, they are durable and easy to transport for further constriction. When it comes to shipping container sizes and prices, they may vary depending on your exact needs and budget. These containers are available in a huge variety of sizes as well as prices.
How much does a shipping container cost?
Though it is not possible to tell the exact cost, the average shipping container price for a 20ft shipping container may fall somewhere between $3,000 to $3,500. On the other hand, a 40ft shipping container may cost you approx $4,500 to $5,000. Containers can cost anywhere from $1,400 to $5,000 depending on the factors like material, time of construction, transport, etc.
If you are looking for a good deal, you must understand the relationship between the price range and the condition of the container.
Where Can I Buy a Shipping Container?
Planning to buy a shipping container? Well! There are many ways you can get a good shipping container at a reasonable price. Find some reliable companies offering shipping containers and you will find a lot of suppliers. There are many online sites where you can search for new as well as second-hand shipping containers. You can also get them directly from manufacturing companies and save big on the middleman and markups cost.
As shipping container is a fantastic solution for a variety of needs, it will be a wise decision to have one.
The Final Words
Nowadays, shipping containers are being used to make portable homes, portable office container, studios, cabins, and storage sheds. People are building homes of all shapes and sizes using storage containers. Also, a huge variety of shipping container home plans is available to suit varied needs. Best of all, it is an eco-friendly and cost-effective approach to building something innovative.
If you are planning to build a storage container home or office, do your research and find the best match!